Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse: Why You Can’t Wait another Day to Get Help

It started off as one drink at a party.  Or maybe it started as drinking/using drugs before school or work to help increase energy to get through the day, or after school or work as a way to blow off some steam.  Maybe it started off as a way to cope with sadness or loneliness while you were at home.  Most people remember the first time they drank or used drugs, but many people do not think that the last time they drink or use may be the last day of their life.

Here are reasons why you can’t wait another day to seek help:

One time is all it takes to experience life-threatening consequences

The rate of people over-dosing on drugs and alcohol and dying of alcohol and drug-related complications is rising by the minute.  And whether you are just starting to experiment with drugs or alcohol, or whether you have been drinking or using for some time, one time is all it takes to die from substance abuse.  There is no way to guarantee that you will be safe from drug and alcohol risks or fatalities.  And there is no way to fully understand the biological differences that impact the way one person versus another may respond to drug or alcohol abuse.  We all need to take substance abuse more seriously and encourage ourselves and/or the people we love to get help right away.

Substance abuse often masks underlying mental health issues

Substance abuse often occurs during a time when there is another mental health issue at play.  Maybe you are feeling more depressed or anxious recently due to an upcoming transition or the loss of a loved one.  Or maybe you have started spending time with a new group of friends, and you have felt an increased sense of belonging, but you are engaging in more risky behaviors.  Whatever the reason may be, substance abuse treatment is not just about getting help to reduce and stop the substance.  It’s also about getting help for the underlying emotions and life situations that lead to the abuse.

Substance abuse impacts people off all demographics

Women, men, girls, boys, teenagers, adults, rich, poor, Caucasian, African American, Hispanic, Asian, gay, straight, and everything in between: substance abuse does not discriminate.  It affects people from all walks of life, and there is no group that is more protected than another from its consequences.  There are stereotypes that certain groups can use substances without facing its risks more than others, but the people who experience legal, social, emotional, physical, and life-threatening consequences run across all demographics.

You will more likely stop substance abuse if you get help now

The sooner you get help, the sooner you will be able to get the proper treatment and will less likely face serious consequences.  Starting with outpatient therapy is a great way to learn how to reduce/stop substances while staying at home.  You may need detox or a residential program to stop the behaviors if you are having severe health problems, you’ve harmed yourself or other people, you’re experiencing withdrawal symptoms, and/or if you haven’t been able to totally stop drinking/using on your own.  Don’t let another day pass putting your life at risk; recovering from substance abuse is possible and worth it.